Coming into game two of the 2010 Vegas Summer League I was looking for a much more consistent performance from the Hawks summer team. We basically didn't get that as the Hawks dug themselves a huge hole in the first half due to turnovers that led to high percentage fast break opportunities for the Spurs. Even more troubling was the play of Jeff Teague who had a nice game one performance only to struggle big time during the first half of game two.
When you look at Teague's numbers for the night the 9 turnovers jump off the page at you. When you consider that at least 8 of those 9 came during the first half when the Hawks trailed 52-36. Much like game one, the Hawks settled down in the second half and made a charge. A lot of that had to do with Teague's improvement from half number one. His final numbers his final numbers of 15 points, 4 rebounds, 3 assists arent terrible but consider that 11 of those 15 points came from the free throw line. He struggled mightily in the first half with decision making and tried to force the issue on the break and got burned for it. He also gave Hawks fans everywhere a big scare when he crashed hard to the ground on a drive late in the third quarter and appearing to injure his wrist. He stayed in the game and showed no effects of the injury but it is something to keep an eye on for the rest of summer league.
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The feel good story of the night belongs to Jordan Crawford. It was his hot shooting in the third quarter that got the Hawks back into the game. He finished with 20 points on 6-11 shooting including 3-7 from down town. He was credited with only 2 assists on the night but impressed with his play making skills.
The Hawks didn't get much from anyone else in the first half but a few others came up big in the second half. Trey Gilder hit a big three point shot and got to the free throw line scoring 11 of his 15 points from the line. Despite his skinny frame he looked fearless in driving to the hoop and drawing contact.
Randolph Morris was the other Hawk that was in double figures. While he scored 11 points on 4-5 shooting he only grabbed 2 rebounds in nearly 22 minutes of play. With the Hawks cutting the lead to 2, Morris failed to close off the lane on a Spurs drive to the basket and then failed to corral a defensive rebound on the next trip. His lack of athleticism is glaring as players much smaller than him routinely go over the top of him for rebounds. He has a wide body but doesn't use it for positioning on rebounds well.
Richard Hendrix again looks as polished as any of the Hawks big men on the Summer League team. At 6'9" and 255lbs he has the strength to hold his own inside. He has been solid in both games but the Spurs did overwhelm the Hawks on the inside in the first half. Alade Aminu scored his 4 points of the night during a key stretch when the Hawks were making their run but failed to have the same impact on the game that he had in game one.
Sergiy Gladyr logged about 10 minutes of action in this one and failed to hit a shot going 0-5 from the field. He just doesn't look to be able to add much other than his shooting and if he isn't making shots then he isn't needed on the court. I haven't seen anything that makes me believe he can set himself up for a shot. Still would like to see more from him though over the remainder of the summer league.
On an injury note, Hawks second round pick Pape Sy did not dress in this one due to a sore Achilles. That left Teague and Crawford handling most of the point guard duties for the game. James Augustine twisted his ankle during the second half of the game and did not return.
The Spurs pushed out to a big lead in this one due to a combination of Hawks turnovers and by completely overwhelming them in the paint. The Spurs relaxed a little bit in the third quarter and started settling for long jump shots. That could have been a result of the Hawks finally getting their act together defensively but it still deserves mention. The Hawks also started taking care of the ball and Crawford started to knock down shots while Teague and Gilder got to the free throw line. Once the game got close, the Spurs re-established themselves in the paint and the Hawks had no answer. It was a valiant come back and I don't want to take anything away from that but the Spurs played a part in that comeback as well.
Spurs guard Alonzo Gee was probably the most impressive player on the court in this game scoring a game high 24 points on 8-13 shooting. He played in the D-League last year and logged some minutes with the Wizards before signing for the rest of the season with the Spurs. With his performance tonight I could see him getting a shot from someone at latching on a regular season roster.